Several population groups are disproportionately affected by tobacco use and its negative health effects. There is often a higher prevalence of tobacco use in ethnic minority communities, lower socioeconomic groups and among the LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender) population. The tobacco industry spends millions of dollars each year to target these groups with their deadly products. As a result, MOTAC addresses health disparities throughout its work in Douglas County.
Latinos y el Tobacco
Omaha is a growing metropolitan area with a huge influx of Latino immigrants hailing mainly from Mexico and Central America. The Latino population in the city of Omaha and the state have grown exponentially; however, the ability to adapt services, meet community needs, and provide culturally and linguistically appropriate services has not kept pace. The Latinas, Tabaco, y Cáncer program began in 2005 with the aim of educating Latina women on the dangers of tobacco use, exposure to second-hand smoke, and the relationship between tobacco use and cancer. This program has become a major component of UNMC Center for Reducing Health Disparities Tobacco Prevention Program.
Latinas, Tobacco, and Cáncer (LTC) is a Latina empowerment group engaged to fight tobacco and prevent cancer through education and advocacy. Latina women come together to increase awareness about the dangers of tobacco use and exposure to secondhand smoke.
LTC develop community-based projects to influence the social norms around tobacco use and cancer prevention. As part of their advocacy and educational efforts within the Hispanic community, the group members distribute educational materials on tobacco issues affecting this population during community events: Cinco de Mayo Parade, National Alliance on Mental Illness Walks, Susan Komen Walk, PRIDE Parade, and community health fairs and exhibitors. Their latest project is a Poetry Book based on personal experiences related to tobacco use, exposure to secondhand smoke and tobacco related illnesses. LTC meets bi-monthly to learn about various health issues and are conducted in Spanish.
LTC is facilitated by Antonia Correa, Tobacco Prevention Outreach Specialist, and Ariss Rogel Mendoza, Outreach Project Associate For more information or to get on the mailing list, contact Antonia at (402) 559-3670 or via email at email@example.com.
LGBT Community and Tobacco
In the United States, tobacco kills more people each day than AIDS, alcohol, car crashes, firearms, and illegal drugs combined. Up to half of the people who smoke, will die early losing an average of 10-20 years of life, and everyone is affected by secondhand smoke.
MOTAC realizes that the tobacco industry targets specific groups of people through aggressive marketing tactics. The LGBT community has been one of these groups that have been continuously exploited by Big Tobacco. Targeting of the LGBT community is done on a large scale through direct advertisements, promotions, and philanthropic support by sponsoring PRIDE events and giving out free merchandise in and around the bar and club scene. Many organizations accept money from the tobacco industry in the form of sponsorships, allowing tobacco to further infiltrate the culture
Some of tobacco's effects on the LGBT community include: